About the Data Watchdog

Import clean, reliable, and safe data.

Gareth Burroughes avatar
Written by Gareth Burroughes
Updated over a week ago

The Data Watchdog (powered by WinstonAI) is a unique checkpoint that is on the lookout for any questionable or risky data. After all, we don't want anyone to be guilty of email abuse; it damages reputation and deliverability.

That's why you encounter the Data Watchdog whenever you import contact email addresses.

How the Data Watchdog works

The Data Watchdog is a powerful and intelligent analysis tool unique to our application and powered by our very own WinstonAI, protecting our sender reputation and your delivery rates. No email address makes it into the system without being checked by the Data Watchdog first. Using a complex set of algorithms and checks, the Data Watchdog predicts, detects and prevents abuse.

Launched in April 2009, the Data Watchdog has completed an astronomical number of checks, helping to safeguard against users sending to email addresses that might cause damage to our and your reputation. It alerts us to users possibly trying to send to contacts that they may not have permission to send to, and which may then cause complaints.

Twofold protection

Data Watchdog protects in multiple ways:

  • Protects the sender who's uploading the data. By assessing and blocking problematic data, we're protecting you from complaints and potential ISP blocklistings, and guarding your all-important delivery rates.

  • Protects you from being affected by other users sending to potentially problematic data.

Therefore it’s designed specifically to protect ALL of our clients and potential recipients from difficulties caused by ANY user sending to suspect data. This is undoubtedly a good thing.

But data verification is still your responsibility

The Data Watchdog isn't a data verification tool, and shouldn't be relied upon as one. It's the responsibility of all users and their data providers to ensure the data they're sending to isn't problematic.

The Data Watchdog blocks any suspicious data it's previously seen and red-flagged, and, where possible, it blocks data that exhibits known characteristics of suspicious data. As such, it's intended to help protect our reputation and yours. It's not intended to provide a substitute for the sender ensuring the quality and trustworthiness of their lists.

Data Watchdog outcomes

Immediately after checking your contact import file, the Data Watchdog reports back to you in one of the following three ways:

Your file has been cleared

What it means: Your file has been successfully checked and cleared for use. It doesn't contain any contact data that unduly alarms the Data Watchdog.

What you need to do: Nothing. The data in your file has been analysed and judged to be clean and safe to send to. You can proceed as normal.

Your file has been flagged as 'at risk'

What it means: Your file has been checked and whilst not quarantined on this occasion, it has been judged that some of your email data is a cause for concern.

What you need to do: You're free to proceed and send to the contacts in this file but it's important to understand that you do so with the possible risk of sending abuse. As it's important that you're diligent about where you source your data and how you collect permission for it, it would be a good idea to seek further advice on this from either our Help Centre, or by contacting our support team or your Customer Success representative.

Your file has been quarantined

What it means: Your file has been quarantined as there's a significant cause for concern with regards to the quality of your email data.

What you need to do: You need to either contact our support team or your Customer Success representative to discuss your data in more detail.

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